Pause….continued

There’s times in life where we ask God why and are met with nothing but silence. On occasion He decides to graciously lift the vail and reveal just a hint of what He’s accomplishing behind the scenes. I don’t know if I can do this story justice but I have to share the miracle that I just got to witness.

Let me set the stage. In my last post I told y’all that there was an issue with my mammogram and I had to go have more tests run. I found out the there was an asymmetry and they needed to do another mammogram and an ultra sound. Twenty years ago I had to have a mass removed from my breast because it was pre-cancerous (full story in mypost Storms), so needless to say I was worried. And with my husband gone I was feeling alone. I few months back my friend Ella, who I had recently met, told me she was just diagnosed with breast cancer. It was encapsulated so they weren’t too worried, but things didn’t go as planned. She went in to have a lumpectomy and then was supposed to be scheduled for radiation. Unfortunately they didn’t get enough of the tissue the first time so she went back for a second surgery. After the second lumpectomy they were convinced they got it all and just had to wait till she healed and then on to radiation, this was the last I had heard prior to my abnormal mammogram. When I got the call that I had to go back for further tests I wanted to call Ella and talk to her and just share my fears with her. I didn’t though, I was too concerned that I would add to what she was already going through. Plus, mine was a big question mark at this point and hers was cancer. So, I carried on alone.

The day come for test number two for me. I couldn’t get Ella off my mind. I wanted so badly to talk to her but my own “you can do this alone” kept getting in the way. Thankfully God works even when we are being stubborn and “brave.” As I was sitting at the cubicle doing paperwork I hear the lady in the cubicle next to me spell her name. E-l-l-a. I couldn’t believe it. She was here. This couldn’t be coincidence, this had God written all over it. After a hug that felt more like the two of us clinging to the edge of sanity we were able to sit and visit in the waiting room and quickly catch up on our latest boob drama. She told me that she was there because her doctor was concerned with her pathology report. Her cancer cells were extremely aggressive and she’s a 3 negative, meaning that her body is very resistant to any cancer treatment, so the doctor wanted to look at her lymph nodes just to be safe. Our visit was cut short by them taking me back to the boob squishing torture chamber. As they pulled, squished and bruised my boob I was desperately praying for Ella and I know she was doing the same. To know you are not alone in a fight is one of the most comforting feelings. After they sufficiently bruised my boob they left me in the waiting room until the ultra sound room was available, the one where Ella was. While I was waiting the tech came out and told me that everything in my mammogram looked good but they still wanted to do the ultra sound just to make sure. I breathed a half sigh of relief, and waited, and prayed, and waited, and prayed, and waited some more. I was getting nervous for Ella and hoped that maybe she had already left and it wasn’t her room I was waiting for. Finally, they called me back. Right before I got on the table I got this text from her, “Heading home, found a suspicious lymph. They need a second opinion to look, probably a biopsy. Looks cancerous to them.” I can’t begin to tell you how my heart sank.

My ultra sound come back normal and I got a clean bill of health, yet I walked out of there defeated. I said in my last post that I just needed a pause, a break, a chance to breath. I’m going to be brutally honest. I was frustrated. I know I should be thankful and praising God for my results but I couldn’t get over Ella’s. I was grateful in my head for my normal imaging results but I couldn’t get my heart to agree with my head. I felt guilty. Guilty for not having cancer, for not being grateful, for telling her I was good to go when her results were far from good.

That same day Hurricane Ida began to form with the potential of hitting close to home. My husband still away left my daughter and I to do all the prep. So much for a pause in the chaos. I was tired. Tired of fighting everything life kept throwing at me. I just wanted a chance to catch my breath and yet every time I turned around there was another battle to fight. Thankfully the storm didn’t do too much damage where we are. The constant changes in barometric pressure reeked havoc on my body though and left me as a professional couch potato for 2-3 days. Good opportunity for cuddle time with my daughter and we accomplished some impressive binge watching.

Ella and I had set up to go to coffee and thankfully the day we set happened to be the first nice day after the storm. We sat there in the beautiful sunshine and cried, laughed, and enjoyed just being together. We both talked of how tired we are and how much we felt like we were running on empty. We joked that our give a damn was busted, and how much we just needed a break. Then I asked her how she was doing with her boob issue, and I watched the battle begin. As believers we are told that God is in control, and to count it all joy, and not to stress, or worry cause He’s got it all. She’d go from, “I’m so upset,” to “I know God’s got it.” I’ve done this most of my life so I knew first hand the battle she was facing. Several years ago I read a book called “No More Faking Fine,” in it the author talks a lot about this battle we fight. One of the things she talked about was when we ask God “Why?” Sometimes as Christians we feel shame for asking why, like it’s a sign that we don’t truly love or trust God. And then if we don’t get a response we assume that God must be mad at us or that we are out of His will. In her book she states that we need to be ok with asking why and not getting a response. I thought she was crazy until one of the scriptures she sited was Mark 15:34. “And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?’ which is translated, ‘My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?’” Do you know what the response was to Jesus asking why? Silence. Moments later He breathed His last. I told Ella that I’ve decided that if Christ in His darkest hour can call out why than I can too. And if God didn’t answer Him than I too can be ok with the silence.

This morning came the pause that I’ve been so desperately praying for. The breath of Love washed over me. Here is the text that Ella sent to me and two other ladies who have been praying for her. “My prayer warriors. I have no words. I was just in there for an hour and a half and walked out with no biopsy! My lymph nodes all are now NORMAL! They had several specialists look at the images, several techs, etc and that bad one is now normal! Even looked at my left side to compare! Your prayers produced a miracle. I can’t even express to you my gratitude and love for you. There are no words. You are my sister in Christ. So blessed to have you.” I still get goosebumps reading these words again. As I look back over the last few weeks, I see God’s hand orchestrating so many details. You might ask why He couldn’t have just healed her right away, why let her walk through all this only to heal her at the end. Maybe for the same reason He was silent and left Christ on the cross. To show His power in an undeniable way. When Ella was getting her ultra sound the tech, for some reason, started sharing with Ella how she lost her sister in a car accident just a few months ago. She stated she’s never told a patient this before and didn’t know why she was telling Ella now, but she was so angry over the loss of her sister. Ella then began to share what I had shared with her about Christ asking why on the cross. The tech began to cry and Ella was able to share hope with this tech while she was looking for a cancerous lymph node on her. The tech then got to witness a miracle as Ella walked away with normal test results.

Y’all our God is absolutely amazing. He cares so much for us that He sets up “coincidences” like appointments at the same time, a tech who needs hope spoken into her life…where does the ripples from this one event end? All from a lady who decided to take the crap she had walked through and write a book to encourage others. I can’t wait to get to heaven and see where the ripples lead!!

As always, I’d love to hear from you. Please comment below or send me an e-mail.

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